Dancers from the HCM City Ballet Symphony Orchestra and Opera will perform in the ballet The Nutcracker at the Opera House on Friday, Saturday and Sunday to welcome the Christmas season. Photo courtesy of HBSO

The ballet is choreographed by Johanne Jakhelln Constant, art director of the Moving Art Theatre in Bodo, Norway, who previously worked with the HBSO to produce the ballet Cinderella. It premiered in HCM City in 2001 as part of the Norway government's Transposition programme to bring classical music projects to Vietnam.

The Nutcracker is based on the story The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by German author E.T.A. Hoffmann. The two-act work features the dream of the little girl Clara and her adventures with a nutcracker, a gift from her godfather.

It was first presented at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia on December 17, 1892 and has become a worldwide favourite during the Christmas season.

The performance in HCM City will feature Vietnamese ballet stars from HBSO, including Ho Phi Diep (as the Nutcracker), Do Hoang Khang Ninh (Clara), Tran Hoang Yen (Sugarplum Fairy) and Dam Duc Nhuan (Mr Drosselmeyer).

Japanese dancers Naoki Tomikawa (Cavalier) and Yuki Hiroshige (Snow Queen and Dewdrop) will also perform.

Tomikawa studied classical ballet and graduated from the National Vaganova Ballet School in Russia in 1991. He has worked for the New National Theatre and Noriko Kobayashi Ballet Theater in Japan, and is now a member of the VolksTheater Rostock in Germany.

Hiroshige began practicing ballet at the age of 11, and began studying at the Australian Ballet School in 1993. She worked as a solo dancer at the New National Theatre from 1996, and later performed at Noriko Kobayashi Ballet Theater from 2005.

The performance will also feature dancers from HBSO’s ballet troupe.

The ballet’s music, composed by Tchaikovsky, will be performed by the HBSO symphony orchestra and feature a female choir.

Tran Nhat Minh, a graduate of the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory, will conduct the orchestra.

Minh has won top prizes at international and national contests such as the International Competition for Young Conductors in Vladivostok, Russia, in 2003, and the annual All-Russia Competition for Professional Conductors in 2006.

He also won first prize at the 2009 Vietnam National Competition of Voice-Dance and Music and the 2014 International Choral Festival organised by Interkultur in Hội An. He has performed with orchestras in Russia, France and Italy.

The Nutcracker will begin at 8pm at the Opera House at 7 Lam Son Square in District 1. Tickets are available at the venue and at www.ticketbox.vn. VNS

The Nutcracker once again

The Nutcracker once again

Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without The Nutcracker.   

Vietnam’s “ballet prince” dreams of introducing Vietnamese ballet abroad

Vietnam’s “ballet prince” dreams of introducing Vietnamese ballet abroad

To many Vietnamese ballet fans, Meritorious Artist Dam Han Giang is popularly known as Vietnam’s “Ballet Prince”.